COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (May 11, 2020) – Twenty players younger than 21 have been named to the 2020 U.S. Men’s Junior National Training Team.
USAV plans to assemble the team to train in August in Colorado Springs before competing at the NORCECA U21 Pan American Cup, also scheduled for Colorado Springs. These plans are subject to change due to the regional and national responses to COVID-19.
Players returning from the 2019 Boys Youth National Team that placed 15th at the FIVB U19 World Championship are libero Mason Briggs, outside hitters Clarke Godbold, Alex Knight and Francesco Sani, setters Joe Karlous and Kevin Kauling, middle blockers Ethan Hill and Gavin Julien and opposite James Hartley. Kauling also played on the 2019 Men's Junior National Team that competed at the U21 Pan Am Cup.
Players who were on the 2018 Boys Youth National Team that placed second at the NORCECA U19 Championship are middle blocker Nathaniel Gates, Briggs, Godbold, Hartley, Hill, Knight and Karlous.
The training team’s head coach is Ohio State Men’s Head Coach Kevin Burch, an assistant for the Boys Youth National Team in 2018-19. His assistants are Pat Shawaryn (Princeton University assistant) and Matt Werle (Grand Canyon University head coach).
“I had the opportunity to work with the youth team and this age group over the past two summers and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know these guys,” Burch said. “The experience only made the selection process that much more difficult.
“Coach Werle, Coach Shawaryn and I had a lot of tough decisions, but we ultimately selected a group we know will be competitive internationally.
“We’ll have a ton of international experience, elite athleticism and size, outstanding leadership and competitiveness.”
The training team includes two players with Olympic volleyball connections. Rees Barnett is the son of two-time Olympic outside hitter Kevin Barnett. Bryce Dvorak is the nephew of 1984 gold medal setter Dusty Dvorak.
Name (Pos, Height, Hometown, College)
Rees Barnett (Opp, 6-5, Redondo Beach, Calif., UC Santa Barbara)
Mason Briggs (L, 6-0, Valencia, Calif., LBSU)
Ethan Champlin (L, 6-3, Oceanside, Calif., UCLA)
Bryce Dvorak (S, 6-4, Newport Beach, Calif., (Pepperdine)
Nolan Flexen (Opp, 6-8, Rio Rancho, N.M., Grand Canyon)
Nathaniel Gates (MB, 6-8, La Jolla, Calif., Stanford)
Clarke Godbold (OH, 6-6, San Pedro, Calif., LBSU)
James Hartley (Opp, 6-6, Waxhaw, N.C., Princeton)
Ethan Hill (MB, 6-7, San Clemente, Calif., UCLA)
Gavin Julien (MB, 6-8, Whitefish Bay, Wis., BYU)
Joseph Karlous (S, 5-11, Costa Mesa, Calif., Pepperdine)
Kevin Kauling (S, 6-8, Naperville, Ill., Lewis)
Alex Knight (OH, 6-6, Culver City, Calif., UCLA)
Gavin Leising (MB, 6-9, Newhall, Calif., Princeton)
Keaton Long (OH/Opp, 6-4, Plano, Texas, Lewis)
Jacob Pasteur (OH/Opp, 6-4, Westminster, Md., The Ohio State)
Will Rottman (OH, 6-5, Santa Barbara, Calif., Stanford)
Francesco Sani (OH, 6-8.5, Bethesda, Md., UC Irvine)
Bryce Walker (MB, 6-8, Bartlett, Ill., Purdue Fort Wayne)
Henry Wedbush (S, 6-4, Manhattan Beach, Calif., Princeton)
Head Coach: Kevin Burch (The Ohio State)
Assistant Coach: Pat Shawaryn (Princeton)
Assistant Coach: Matt Werle (Grand Canyon)
Technical Coordinator: Mike Gee (North Pacific Juniors Volleyball Club)
Head of Delegation: Gabby Lutjen (USA Volleyball)